SpongeBob SquarePants: The Cosmic Shake

released on Jan 31, 2023

Wish-granting Mermaid’s Tears in the hands of SpongeBob and Patrick… What could go wrong? Sure, the very fabric holding the universe together could come undone, opening portals into wild Wishworlds. But that’s nothing our favorite sponge can’t handle- with the right cosmic costume!

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And here I still managed to end up enjoying Battle for Bikini Bottom Rehydrated despite starting it off with bad impressions for me. Sometimes I think it is impressive when I play a "bad" game that's bad in the way I don't like it, rather than it just being plain boring, because that means there's more to talk about in terms of what makes it not work.
First of all, the control is too slippery. While it isn't a huge deal on the ground, when trying to glide, SpongeBob will be turning way too fast, making you miss jumps or have a hard time controlling him.
I do have some mixed feelings about the level design. I liked the different movement options and how , they are probably the best part of the game, but the levels themselves feel like they want to cram in too much in them with how short they actually are, which results in them being more memorable from concept rather than gameplay. My guess is that it's because this game has the same controls as BFBB, but that it fits more for a collectathon like it while this game is a lot more linear with the occasional collectible, which way too many are hidden in plain sight. I know this is a kids game, but even to them this is too easy. And aside from said collectibles, there really isn't anything else to do in the levels, since if you want to fully complete them, you need to backtrack.
The story is mostly just an excuse to include as many SpongeBob references as possible. Hell, a majority of the levels literally use the same locations as BFBB with just a new theme such as historical set pieces. And in terms of structure, you just go from one world to another in a straightforward manner, nothing more to say.
There are also many technical problems. I normally don't complain too much about these sorts of things, but it was too distracting in this game, like the sound design. Sound effects don't always occur, voices either cancel each other out or talk on top of each other, and just like in BFBB, get used to hearing the same lines over and over again. And there are several times where the game would just stop for a few seconds, likely from there being too much on screen, and as you can guess, that's not fun (there are rarely any loading screens in the game, so compared to previous SB games, this one has to balance a lot in just one level).
And this is pretty unimportant, but anyways. I've been a fan of SpongeBob since I was little, but in recent times, I've decided to move on to pursue other media. I still wanted to give this game a chance, because, hey, I still have my fondness for the sponge. But then I left it feeling pretty disappointed, so let's just say, I feel even more ready then ever to move on.
But major thumps up for this game not restricting itself to just the pre-movie era when making references to the show.

This might be my favorite of the SpongeBob Platformers. It feels like an evolution of the gameplay without feeling like it is just BFBB 2. I hope that future games emphasize movement options like this game does.

Takes what I enjoyed about the first game and makes it so much more fun to play. Also this game kinda counts as an Isakai and that's amazing.

this was quite a decent lil game not as good battle for bikini bottom but still cool to see more ps2 era platformers be made new in current year

It's a good game, I think it just falls short of Battle for Bikini Bottom. Once I completed the story I didn't feel the need to 100% like BFBB. A few of the worlds felt too rushed, but it's still a fun enough game to complete the story. Also the costumes are an awesome addition, so many callbacks to the show.

ah. i was truly suckered into blowing $30 on a rushed licensed product. i really am an adult now.
cosmic shake feels so weird. it constantly feels like it should be a great game. the controls are solid enough, the graphics are appealing, and it's running on the basis of the bfbb remake that i thought was great. yet, the new direction they take with the gameplay feels rushed at best. the game tells you where to go and what to do, and besides some side collectables, it's a straight shot to the finish with little non-visual variety. abilities that spongebob once had in the heavy iron games are no longer around, and you have to progress in the game to learn new ones (artificially making it so that you have to backtrack to previous levels if you want to 100% them). combat is drolling and repetitive, especially when they force you to take down the three-hit tanks. everything just feels worse.
this sentiment extends to the game's identity as well. half of the writing is references, and all of it isn't funny - precisely because it plays it way too safe and hogties itself to what older people might vaguely recall spongebob to be. i don't think anything made me respect the current spongebob crew's aim to give modern episodes a distinct difference from classic episodes than seeing a random european writing group's fanfiction given a budget. to that end, the audio - music is unmemorable, the voice lines play way too frequently, and sound mixing leaves much to be desired.
i could be much meaner. i thought i was going to be meaner. i also thought this might have turned out better than it ended up. i had high hopes for at least another solid spongebob adventure. i pre-ordered this for $10 less than msrp. unfortunately, when i finally got around to this, all i ended up with was a disappointment.